Monday, September 17, 2007

European Teenager Wins First WSOP Europe

Europeans Dominate First World Series of Poker Outside Las Vegas

18-year old Internet phenomenon Annette Obrestad has been crowned champion of Europe after a tense heads-up battle at the inaugural World Series of Poker Europe, at the Casino at the Empire in the early hours of this morning.

The Norwegian, who goes by the name of Annette_15 on the Internet, became the youngest bracelet winner in World Series history, when she emerged victorious from a tense heads-up battle with 22-year old Englishman John Tabatabai.

“I never expected to win,” said Obrestad, who turns 19 in a day’s time. “I’m speechless. I really don’t know what to say.”

The result was a fitting end to a hugely successful tournament that had the largest concentration of elite poker players that Europe has ever seen. Yet, only Gus Hansen made a telling impression on the tournament, having sacrificed an overnight chip lead on Friday to crash out on the final table bubble.

However, the WSOPE, and particularly its winner, has made an indelible contribution to the welfare of the international game, and has also served to underline the talent that exists on this side of the Atlantic.

“In the end, the Europeans dominated here,” said WSOP Commissioner Jeffrey Pollack. “But this is the start of a new tradition for the World Series of Poker and the European and global poker communities. WSOP Europe will provide more exciting action in the years to come and we’re confident poker greats from all over the world – and across the generations – will shine here, just as they have in Las Vegas.”